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Colonel Douglas John Kennett (Ret)
October 30, 1945 ~ October 25, 2023 (age 77) 77 Years Old
Colonel Douglas John Kennett (Ret), age 77 of Alexandria, VA, peacefully passed away at home on Wednesday, October 25, 2023. Born October 30, 1945 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, he moved to New Jersey as a child and became a US Citizen to be able to join the US Air Force.
Doug earned a B.A. from Rutgers University in Journalism/Advertising and an M.A. from Ball State University in Counseling. He had over four decades of public relations management leadership in both the military and private industry, specializing in media relations, crisis communications, executive level strategic planning and employee communications. For 30 years he served as an Air Force Public Affairs Officer.
He headed Public Affairs at bases in Texas, Korea, and England, and then served as Public Affairs Deputy for the United States Air Force Security Service in Washington, DC. Later, he joined the Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs Press Desk, handling highly controversial policy issues. He then became Chief of the Air Force Press Desk in the Department of Defense. His further assignments included Director of Public Affairs for the 3rd Air Force and Air Force Systems Command, Director of Air Force Media Relations and Director of Press Operations for the Department of Defense.
After retiring from the Air Force, Doug spent 14 years at Boeing as a national security spokesman. For several years he served as Vice President of Communications for their Aircraft and Missiles Business, leading a staff of 160 persons with a budget of $20 million. In 2011 he was honored by the Aerospace Industries Association with the Lyman Award for lifetime achievement in aerospace communications and journalism. He was universally well-liked by colleagues who viewed him as a friendly, honest, dependable, and trustworthy professional who was extremely competent in his field.
Doug served 28 years on his Condominium Board of Directors where he lived; 23 of those years as President or Vice President. He also supported and served on the Board of Directors for United Community, a nonprofit organization helping families in need in Fairfax County, Virginia. For Doug, volunteering was never a discretionary activity, it was a component of his character.
In his retirement Doug very much enjoyed traveling with friends and family, Rutgers football, trivia, entertaining and keeping up with the news.
Doug was a loving husband to Eileen, Stepdad to John Jameson and his wife Lucy, and GranDoug to granddaughters, Anna and Elly. He is also survived by his sister Marjorie Armstrong, niece Nancy and extended family members living in the US and Canada.